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«It’s not the arrival of Netflix, it’s all we do in terms of development»: Mateo Burgos, CEO Mbc

May 12, 2021

Por: Vanessa Sánchez

The streaming company Netflix announced that it will soon open offices in Colombia, a news that was reiterated by President Iván Duque with a message related to his government proposal to turn the country into the Silicon Valley of Latin America.

Netflix also assured that the opening of this new house will allow more productions in our country. The company announced that between 2021 and 2022 it will shoot more than 30 new series, films, documentaries and specials in Colombia.

With this opening, they know that they will allow all the advertising, content and communications teams that work for Netflix members and the industry in Colombia, Peru and other countries in northern South America, to be located in Bogotá. It was also learned that there will be new local positions and that the option of job offers will open soon.

For the CEO and founder of Mbc IT Talent Solution, Mateo Burgos Castillo, this is good news that cannot be misrepresented, since there is a long way to go, for example, we must start by overcoming the low rates of bilingualism in the country, but it is worth rescuing that despite this there are hundreds of software developers in Colombia who work remotely with Silicon Valley companies and that, in the future, they could replicate that knowledge or create companies in the national territory. We talked with him about a topic that was a trend in social networks and that serves as a basis to give an account of the technological reality of the country.

Is it necessary to say that with the opening of the Netflix offices, Colombia could become Silicon Valley?

Netflix does not arrive in Colombia for software development, but they will generate content and make a commercial opening. Their main offices where great things do happen are in the United States and in Latin America they are supported commercially, such as in Chile and Peru and Ecuador.

How close or far are we from being another Silicon Valley?

We are far from being Silcon Valley, but we are on a good path with concrete actions that have been carried out for several governments, even since the signing of the FTA, there has been talk of technological investment. There is no doubt that the quality of the workforce and professional training in Colombia that the technology giant requests to integrate its teams, account for an important national development and we must take advantage of that to continue making an important contribution.

What are foreign companies looking for in Colombia?

International companies set their eyes on our country, not only because of the talent of our professionals, but because of their drive. The DNA of Colombians and the ideas that have created ventures, companies, products, ways of marketing and even organizations that have achieved injection of foreign capital to develop their ideas, are very clear ideas that here we have what it takes to be very competitive.

In addition, it is a reality that the United States cannot access qualified labor, because it is very expensive and even there is no availability. That is why the idea that they only believe in the people of their country has already been revalued, since they have been committed to seeking possibilities for the expansion of human talent and new ideas. Here we have what it takes to do what they are looking for very well.

In other words, in the United States, do they already believe in our country and invest here with certainty?

Yes, I have met with businessmen who tell us: «We did not believe in the Latin American workforce and today we are not leaving Colombia. Expansion in resources, innovation and its people force us to stay. We tried Latin work and we do not change it for anything.»

But, it is undeniable that the country has a deficit of software and systems engineers, what happens to these figures?

In a few years there will be a boom in startups and innovative products and connecting with international companies will be very easy. We come in a process of creation, entrepreneurship is barely being supported and laws are being created. This is hardly a start. We know that 100,000 programmers are needed to cover all the needs of the country and abroad; The future is on the way, because in 5 or 10 years the world will only work with digitization, and although we are aware of the technological barriers, we are already beginning to develop.

In what specific areas are Colombian engineers required?

At this time, an engineer who knows about Machine Learning is in great demand by international companies. As there is little training on the subject, they turn out to be very expensive. They are engineers who can earn between 8 to 25 million pesos.

There are also engineers who speak a second and third language very well and started their careers 10 years ago and have connected with international companies. This means that talent by itself has sown confidence and they are opening the gap for engineers who are preparing to have a space for them.

So are constancy and perseverance the key for engineers and entrepreneurs to achieve a position in the IT sector?

The big businessmen did not get where they are from one day to the next. Not only should you believe in the product, you also have to ask for help because it is very easy to become unmotivated on the way to entrepreneurship. In addition, because in two, three and even four years one does not see money or profits from the venture and this easily makes the idea go under. Today I advise entrepreneurs to study programming, to look for allies, to be trained, to learn a second language. There are already people

doing many things and we as Mbc knock and open doors every day to generate and connect IT human talent with companies around the world.

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